[The assembled davened Minchah, after which the children of Tzivos Hashem throughout the world (New York, Jerusalem, Moscow, London and Paris) recited the twelve verses and sayings of the Sages. The Chanukah lights were then kindled, and HaNeiros Halalu was sung in all the above places. The Rebbe shlita then said the following:]

1. When Jews assemble and gather together they are to speak words of Torah, as the Mishnah states (Avos 3:2, 3:6) with regard to “Two people who sit together and occupy themselves in Torah,” and especially, “three,” “five,” and surely, “Ten people who sit together and occupy themselves in Torah.”

Surely so in this instance, when so many Jews have assembled, much more than ten and even more than one hundred Jews, men, women and children, who have assembled during a propitious time — the days of Chanukah, and in an auspicious place — in a synagogue and house of study. All of this adds greatly to the “King’s splendor,” the King of kings, the Holy One, blessed be He.

And G‑d, who conducts Himself in a manner of “measure for measure” and many times more so, reciprocates by repaying all those who are taking part in this assembly, and surely to those who organized the assembly in a manner that it actually came to pass, by providing them with all their needs, first and foremost, providing the Jew — who was “created to serve his Master” — with the ability to serve Him without hindrances, and amidst plenty, good health, and revealed and palpable good, so that the Jew be able to study Torah and perform mitzvos in the most complete manner possible.

This serves as a speedy preparation to the true and complete redemption, at which time Torah and mitzvos will be performed in the best manner possible, for at that time true peace will reign in the world (see Rambam, Ch. 9 of Hilchos Teshuvah). And something similar to this has already occurred during the time of exile.

May it be G‑d’s will that all this take place in a manner of being able to “Point with one’s finger saying ‘this’ [is it],” similar to the [readily observable] kindling of the Chanukah lights that just took place. And just as we recited the Shehecheyanu on the kindling of the Chanukah lights — for the blessing of Shehecheyanu recited on the first day applies to all subsequent days as well — so, too, should we make a Shehecheyanu on the final moment of exile, which is transformed into the first moment of redemption.

And Jews the world over — “Our young, our old, our sons and our daughters” — will be individually taken by G‑d to the Holy Land, to Jerusalem and to the Holy Temple and its Heichal, and Aharon, the High Priest, (one of the Shepherds and eight Princes) will light the Menorah.

At that time, we will all dance together with joy and gladness of heart, and collectively we will recite and sing HaNeiros Halalu, something that will also be done in actuality “through Your holy kohanim,” with Aharon HaKohen at their head. Especially so, as there is the prayer of the multitude who say “Until when?!” — Jews desire and are in need of the redemption, and G‑d has assured that He fulfills the request of the many, moreover, doing so, immediately.

[The Rebbe shlita went on to request that HaNeiros Halalu be sung again, and this was done simultaneously in all the above countries.]

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2. We have spoken many times about some of the main lessons that are underscored by the mitzvah of kindling the Chanukah lights:

A) The Chanukah lights are kindled “on the entrance of his house that leads to the street,” in order to publicize the miracle of Chanukah. This teaches us — as indicated many times — that it does not suffice to merely illuminate one’s own home with the light and illumination of Torah and mitzvos.

Rather, it is the obligation and merit of each and every Jew to disseminate the light of Judaism — the light of Torah and its mitzvos — outside of one’s home as well, so that the “outside” and public domain also be illuminated, thus assuring that all evil is eliminated and even those who rebel — G‑d forbid — against G‑d also become nullified to Him.

B) The service of “A mitzvah is a candle and Torah is light” must be performed in an ever-increasing and illuminating manner, similar to the mitzvah of kindling the Chanukah lights which is performed in an ever-increasing manner. I.e., although one performs the mitzvah of kindling the Chanukah lights in the best possible manner by kindling one light on the first night of Chanukah, nevertheless, after a day passes a single light does not suffice — there must be an increase and two lights must be lit. And so one increases from day to day. Additionally, this is done “on the entrance of his house that leads to the street,” as explained above.

In addition to these matters which apply to Chanukah every year, there is also something novel to Chanukah as it occurs during each particular year.

Since the beginning of something has an effect on its entirety, it follows that the special lesson of Chanukah this year is mainly emphasized in its beginning — in this instance, the fact that Chanukah began on Shabbos.

This is in keeping with the particular content of Chanukah this year, a year that is permeated with the theme of Shabbos, since Rosh Hashanah this year fell on a Shabbos — the general theme of which is holiness, i.e., aloofness and separation from mundane matters and union with holiness.

This will be better understood by prefacing the following:

In truth, the entire life of a Jew is on a plane of Shabbos, for “I have been created to serve my Master,” and as the Torah commands us, “All your actions should be for the sake of Heaven” and “In all your ways you shall know Him.” Still, within Shabbos itself there are many levels, for we clearly perceive that a Jew’s conduct during the week (although it is filled with holiness — “for the sake of Heaven”) is not at all similar to his conduct on Shabbos, at which time he is entirely removed from mundane affairs.

And so too — in a more general sense — there exist many degrees of Shabbos with regard to the Jewish people as a whole: The life of a young man who earns his livelihood by studying Torah the entire day in a Kollel, (for which reason it is called Kollel, “encompassing,” as Torah study encompasses his entire life,”) is entirely dissimilar to a businessman who is involved in permissible matters.

The underlying difference between the differing degrees of Shabbos: During the week man’s service is mainly clothed in mundane matters, transforming them to holiness, etc., while the service of Shabbos is from the outset clothed entirely in holy matters.

In light of the above the special quality of Chanukah this year, beginning as it does on Shabbos, will be understood accordingly: The general aspect of the holiday (and kindling the lights) of Chanukah emphasizes a Jew’s service with regard to “A mitzvah is a candle and Torah is light.” Accordingly, the general aspect of the service of Chanukah is that of “Shabbos,” as is also to be understood from the fact that the festival of Chanukah always includes the day of Shabbos (inasmuch as there are eight days of Chanukah).

That which is novel about this year is the fact that the beginning of Chanukah is on the day of Shabbos, thereby affecting and permeating all the subsequent days with the spirit of Shabbos — the ultimate and most complete state of holiness. For then, even when the person is involved during the weekday in permissible matters, the effect and empowerment of the Shabbos day bring about that all his actions be entirely and completely holy — similar to the very day of Shabbos itself.

The above concept is also emphasized with regard to the two quite opposite aspects involving the time when the first Chanukah light was lit this year: It was lit a considerable time before Shabbos, and even before Tosafos Shabbos, the time that is added on to Shabbos from the weekday; on the other hand, it is lit for the sake of Shabbos. For we are dealing here with kindling the light for the first day of Chanukah which is on Shabbos (for which reason the lights must burn the appropriate amount of time after the entry of Shabbos).

All this serves to emphasize the novel aspect of Chanukah this year: The sanctity of Shabbos is felt to such a great degree, that even the Chanukah lights that are lit during the weekday are permeated with the holiness of Shabbos — similar to the Shabbos day itself (and similar to that which is generally accomplished by adding on to Shabbos from the weekday.)

We may thus say that this also emphasizes the theme that the Chanukah lights are lit “on the entrance of his house that leads to the street,” for mundane affairs are likened to the “street” and the “outside” in comparison to matters of holiness.

3. There is an additional special quality that is bound up with (kindling the lights of) Chanukah — the special connection to the true and complete redemption and the dedication of the third Bais HaMikdash and the lighting of the Menorah therein. (This, of course, is in addition to the fact that every mitzvah brings salvation and redemption to the world.)

This aspect is particularly enhanced when Chanukah begins on Shabbos, for Shabbos is related to [the redemption,] “A day that is entirely Shabbos and eternally tranquil.” Especially so, when a Jew infuses all the days of his life with Shabbos — “In all your ways shall you know Him.”

This assures that even the person’s mundane affairs become “Everyday matters that are acted upon with the purity of holiness.” Ultimately, this leads to the person conducting his mundane affairs with the sanctity attached to the purifying waters of the Red Heifer, the “tenth of which will be made by Mashiach,” (and within it will be intermingled the ash of the previous Red Heifers), at which time all physical matters will attain their ultimate [Shabbos] completion — G‑d’s kingdom and dominion will pervade every aspect of the world.

This finds particular emphasis in this week’s Torah reading — “It was at the conclusion of two years and Pharaoh had a dream...,” with the end result being that Yosef was released from prison in order to interpret the dream, following which he became viceroy, as related later on in the Torah portion.

However, during the time of the dream itself (“at the conclusion of two years”) Yosef was still a prisoner. Nevertheless, he not only was freed from prison, but he also immediately became second to the king himself — “He exited prison in order to rule” (Koheles 4:14), to the degree that Pharaoh proclaimed to all the people of Egypt, “Without your [Yosef’s] permission, no man shall raise his hand and foot.”

The above is analogous to the time of exile, wherein we exist “like dreamers”: Even when we find ourselves imprisoned by exile the redemption comes immediately, and all Jews become “second to the King,” since all Jews are considered to be G‑d’s only child.

The explanation of this is as follows: The descent into exile is for the purpose of the two-fold subsequent ascent. It is thus understandable that the greatest degree of descent immediately leads to the greatest degree of ascent (since this is the true reason and purpose of the descent).

[It is worth noting, that this too is one of the novel aspects of Chanukah this year: All the days of Chanukah fall within the one week of the Torah reading Mikeitz, and during the first Shabbos as well (the first day of Chanukah) the portion of Mikeitz is read during Minchah.

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4. An additional dimension is added to all the above inasmuch as we have now kindled the fifth Chanukah light. For there is the special Jewish custom of distributing Chanukah gelt — as we observed by the Rebbeim, our Leaders — on that night to sons and daughters, both old and young [as was the custom of the Previous Rebbe to give Chanukah gelt to adults as well]. And the concept of Chanukah gelt too involves the theme of transforming the mundane (silver and gold coins, or paper money) into holiness.

This is in addition to that which has been related many times, that it is proper and fitting to give Chanukah gelt at least twice or three times during Chanukah, and better yet, during each day of Chanukah, including the first and last days — before the onset of Shabbos [prior or subsequent to the kindling]. This in no way contradicts the above mentioned custom of giving Chanukah gelt on the fifth night, for at that time an additional amount is given [and so too is an additional amount to be given on the first and last nights].

In connection with the above, I will now distribute Chanukah gelt, in addition to money for tzedakah, to those who desire to receive it — and who could possibly not desire to receive it?!

May it be G‑d’s will, that all the above will lead to the dedication of the third Bais HaMikdash, especially as we now find ourselves kindling the fifth light, whose number alludes to [as we say in the text of “Who knows One”] the five Books of the Torah — for we shall take [with us at the time of Mashiach’s coming] all the Sifrei Torah and all the shuls, etc., to the Holy Land.

At that time the lighting of the Menorah will be done to perfection, “on the entrance of his house that leads to the street,” i.e., affecting and illuminating the entire world, including the Seventy Nations of the world. “And Kingship shall be the L‑rd’s,” with the immediate true and complete redemption, through Dovid, king and Mashiach — “Dovid, king of Israel, is living and enduring.”

[The Rebbe shlita then gave each of the children four dimes. He then gave the “tankists” dollar bills, in order that they give each of the assembled adults two dollars.]